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Claimed to be the World's lightest DOT-certified helmet, the Kali Shiva also meets the new ASTM downhill mountain biking standard. What does that mean? Now you can do both activities in one helmet knowing your head is well protected. It weighs just 1,050 grams, which is also lighter than the vast majority of mountain bike-specific lids. Compared to the weight of standard DOT helmets it's massively less.

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The helmet has been in the works for several years, and we've teased it on Vital several times before. If it were easy to manufacture, the project would've been done sooner, but Kali says it was worth the wait. Today it's officially available.

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"There is a long standing debate among gravity riders about whether or not to wear a motocross or bicycle certified helmet while mountain biking. There are advantages and disadvantages to both standards, and depending on the crash, the argument could go either way.

Ultimately the two standards are not that different. The main difference is that the DOT certification requires a higher drop test, a stiffer chin bar, and an additional penetration test. The DOT penetration test is designed to simulate crashing into a pointed object like a curb, peg, or handlebar. On a bike, you may encounter similar scenarios if you crash in a rock garden, or catch a pedal.

We've also found that it's not unusual for gravity riders to hit similar speeds as off road racers. Last year for instance, racers at multiple world cup tracks clocked speeds of over 50 mph (~80 kmh) through speed traps."

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Kali Shiva Helmet Highlights

  • World’s lightest DOT certified helmet
  • Weighs 1050g: Between 400­-600g lighter than competitor’s highest end offerings
  • 30% smaller than an average motocross helmet
  • Available in sizes XS, S, M, L, & XL
  • Comes in three colors: Raw carbon, Speed Machine, & Stripes
  • Meets DOT, ASTM DH, ASTM BMX, ASTM Snow, and CPSC Standards
  • Full carbon fiber shell
  • Integrated Airflow system, w/ 8 forward facing vents, and 8 rearward vents
  • Breakaway Visor & Helmet Shape
  • Integrated Removable Camera & Light Mount
  • Premium Travel Bag
  • $500 USD, $399 Euro

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"We can’t control the acceleration, but we can control the mass, and that’s what we tried to do with this helmet. We wanted to make a DOT helmet that had lower density foam and lower mass because we believe that’s better for you in an impact."

The helmet uses a carbon shell, improved integrated airflow system, and washable antimicrobial pads. What makes it really cool, however, is how Kali pulled off the remarkably low weight and slim profile...

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Unlike the vast majority of helmets on the market, the Shiva doesn't use a solid chunk of EPS foam inside the shell. Instead it uses Kali’s in-molded Composite Fusion Three technology, which combines triangular pyramid foam shapes with another density of foam to fill the voids. Kali has used similar technology in their other helmets before, but a switch from the cone shape to the triangular pyramid shape boosted the level of energy dissipation and protection it's able to provide. The new shape’s ability to spread the impact force laterally allowed them to lower the height of the shapes, which in turn slimmed down the helmet's entire profile. Composite Fusion Three bonds the shell directly to the foam. This allows a thinner, less rigid shell that still exceeds both standards.

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Other neat features include a breakaway visor with a swappable mid-section that can be changed out for a GoPro or light mount. Kali includes a bonus visor in the helmet bag, as well as two pad sizes to help dial in the fit. Custom molded polyurethane foam pads are used to adjust the internal size for a total of five sizes.

Photos by Brad Holmes

"While saying something is the lightest and smallest in the world is certainly a great talking point, particularly from a fatigue perspective, recent research indicates that by reducing the size of a helmet by 10%, you can reduce the effects of rotational forces by 22%."

Visit www.kaliprotectives.com for more details, and be sure to watch Rampage hucker Jeff Herberton and local moto pro Robbie Katz to show the versatility of the new Shiva fullface in this ripping video:

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